Celebrities and their Superpowers

Chicago Blackhawks
Here’s a photo of some classy Chicago celebrities using their superpowers. That simple wave is making the day great for thousands of people. Photo via Laurie Marino.

That’s right, folks. Along with having a talent worth paying to see and more money than any one human would ever need, celebrities have superpowers. Okay, maybe not in the conventional superhuman speed or strength, but they can do other things.

Professional athletes can make a sweaty piece of sports equipment worth thousands of dollars by making sure the sweat is their sweat and then writing their name in illegible cursive on it. Performers can stop on the street and take a picture with a stranger and make that person’s entire day. Politicians’ every word is scrutinized, and when what they say makes somebody happy (or unhappy), it instantly goes viral. Authors can write something weak, but because their name is on it, it will still sell out.

If you ask me, those feats are pretty super.

The amazing (and somewhat upsetting) fact of the matter is that many of them don’t realize what kind of power they have in that regard. For better or worse, people are watching what their favorite celebrities are doing and praying for a chance meeting with them. My question is why some celebrities think they are above using their superpowers for good.

Using his powers for...
All this man had to do to make a fan’s day was look at a camera. I don’t pretend to know what goes on in his head, but I can’t think of a justifiable reason not to simply have smiled at the boy. Photo via Laurie Marino.

Take, for example, this man. He will remain unnamed because I like him very much and think he is a good person on the whole (also because if you are a Blackhawks fan, you will figure it out). During the Stanley Cup, this man was exiting his hotel and walking out to the bus the Hawks took. There was a little boy with his father watching the team exit, and when this man passed, he asked him to look his way. Instead, the man purposely turned his head and picked up his speed. (This story is based on the account of a person who was present.)

Here’s the thing: I don’t know what was going on in this man’s life in this moment. Maybe he had a fight with his significant other seconds prior. Maybe he was very anxious about the next game. Maybe he had food poisoning. I understand that those are all very real things that can easily affect a person’s mood, but the fact of the matter is that instead of making a fan’s day, he probably let him down in that deep, personal way kids feel let down when their heroes aren’t what they expected them to be. That is the part that confuses me. No matter how bad your day is, why would you not want to improve somebody else’s? Somebody who adores you and helps to add to your paycheck and thinks you are a hero? How could you possibly just ignore that opportunity?

I understand that we all have “those days,” but I can also guarantee you that if people were paying copious amounts of money to see me do whatever it is I am good at doing or gushing about their undying love and appreciation for me, I would be the first person in line to meet them.

And it is as simple as that meeting. Take, for example, Ed Sheeran. In this video posted to Youtube, Sheeran hears a girl singing “Thinking Out Loud” in a mall. He seeks her out and joins her onstage. Now, I don’t know the girl, but I would be willing to stake my reputation on the fact that her day was made when he did that. It wasn’t anything all that hard to do. He knows his song by heart, I’m sure. But by performing this one simple act, he succeeded in being a superhero for this girl.

Nick Offerman
Nick Offerman (center) used his celebrity superpowers by being approachable and brutally honest. Whatever you think of his comedy, he was pictured here simply being a nice guy and talking to people who think pretty highly of his work. Photo via Graeham Ryan.

Now, I have countless other examples of situations in which people of celebrity status do both good and bad things. I have had the pleasure of meeting people like Nick Offerman, F. Gary Gray, Waka Flocka Flame, the Impractical Jokers (whose photo with me is hidden on a memory card somewhere. I am frantically looking for it, but if I run into you fellows again, we should definitely take another one), Damon Wayans and more. Even without being completely star struck, I can say that each of them made an impact on me personally by being who they were and being cordial. That is literally all it takes to be a celebrity superhero. So, I have to ask, if you are of celebrity status and reading this, please consider using your powers for good. You may not even know how good you are.

To be fair, I must acknowledge the other side. I don’t believe every celebrity can sign every autograph and take every picture. That would be unfair to them. They have lives too, and those loves shouldn’t be spent standing in one place waiting for fans to approach. It should be spent enjoying the craft they have perfected so that we can enjoy it, too.

This leads me to my message to fans. Don’t be annoying. Don’t act entitled to a meeting with your favorite celebrity. Why, you may ask, not? Because you aren’t. If you are able to meet somebody like the Movits! (something I would love), enjoy the experience because you were lucky, not because you deserved it. Autographs are another thing. Especially if you are one of those jerks who wants to get an autograph to sell. Shame on you. Their autograph is not something for you to make a profit on. Don’t bother them while they are eating with their families or walking into restrooms. It just isn’t cool, especially if you turn around and act like they were such jerks. Between you me, if you stopped me on my way to a restroom and wouldn’t give me a minute, I might be a little bit sharp, too. They may be celebrities, but they are people too. If you saw my last video, you know now that all people deserve respect, so by all means, love them and love their work, but give them a break.

Celebrities have great powers and great responsibilities. Some of them have it under control, some are learning and others will forever be nasty people. We can only hope that they will learn to use their powers for good, just like they can only hope we will stop stalking them to their homes and taking pictures of them while they are eating.

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